AMENDMENT. In Legislation. An alter ation or change of something proposed in a bill or established as law.
Thus the senate of the United States may amend money-bills passed by the house of representatives, but cannot originate such bills. The constitution of the United States contains a provision for its amendment; U. S. Coast. art. 5.
In Practice. The correction, by allowance of the court, of an error committed in the progress of a cause.
Amendments, at common law, independent ly of any statutory provision on the subject, are in all cases in the discretion of the court, for the furtherance of justice. Under stat utes in modern practice, they are very liberal ly allowed in all formal and most substantial matters, either without costs to the party amending, or upon such terms as the court think proper to order. See JEOFAILLE.
An amendment, where there is something to amend by, may be made in a criminal as in a civil case; 12 Ad. & E. 217; Com. v. Parker, 2 Pick. (Mass.) 550. But an indict ment, which is a finding upon the oaths of the grand jury, can only be amended with their consent before they are discharged; 2 Hawk. Pl. Cr. c. 25, §§ 97, 98; Com. v. Child, 13 Pick. (Mass.) 200; State v. Mc Carthy, 17 R. I. 370, 22 Atl. 282; but see Miller v. State, 68 Miss. 221, 8 South. 273.
In many states there are statutory provi sions relative to the amendment of indict ments; State v. Curtis, 44 La. Ann. 320, 10 South. 784. A bill of exceptions when signed and filed becomes a part of the record and may be amended like any other record; Mar tin v. R. Co., 53 Ark. 250, 13 S. W. 765 ; Lef ferts v. State, 49 N. J: Law 26, 6 Atl. 521; Pollard v. Rutter, 35 Ill. App. 370; Burdoin v. Town of Trenton, 116 Mo. 358, 22 S. W. 728.
An information may be amended after demurrer ; 4 Term 457; 4 Burr. 2568. At common law a mistake in an information may be amended at any time; State v. White, 64 Vt. 372, 24 Atl. 250.
Where a verdict is supported by evidence, a pleading will be considered as amended ; Haley v. Kilpatrick, 104 Fed. 647, 44 C. C. A. 102.
Where, in the course of a trial, it appears that the pleadings should be amended, the usual practice is to move that "the declara tion eor other pleading) be amended to con form to the facts." Ordinarily no further action is required.
An amended pleading speaks as of the time of the original; Baltimore & 0. R. Co. v. McLaughlin, 73 Fed. 519, 19 C. C. A. 551.
It is not permitted by amendment to make an entirely new case; In re Sims, 9 Fed. 440.